All Accused in Bettiah Gangrape Case Held, Medical Tests Show Victim a Minor, Says Police
Even if it was with mutual consent it would be deemed an offence since the medical reports of the girl, a former inmate of the infamous Muzaffarpur shelter home, have put her age between '15 and 17 years'.
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Patna/Bettiah: All four persons named as accused in the Bettiah gang-rape case have been arrested and the complainant, who claimed she was 18 year old, turned out to be a minor, a top police officer said on Tuesday.
Additional Director General of Police, headquarters, Jitendra Kumar, said that the four accused - including two brothers - have allegedly confessed that they had sexual
intercourse with the girl last week.
Even if it was with mutual consent it would be deemed an offence since the medical reports of the girl, a former inmate of the infamous Muzaffarpur shelter home, have put her age between "15 and 17 years", Kumar noted.
A sex scandal had come to light at the Muzaffarpur shelter home in April last year when abuse of the inmates was flagged in a social audit report by Mumbai-based Tata
Institute of Social Sciences.
Talking to PTI over phone, Bettiah SP Jayantkant said all four accused named in the FIR - Akash Kumar, Sajan Kumar, Kundan Kumar and Anshu Kumar - have been arrested.
"All of them, including siblings Akash and Sajan, are said to be known to the girl. The victim and the accused reportedly used to visit each other," he said.
Earlier, the SP had said that the complainant, in her FIR, stated she was raped by the four on Friday in a moving car in Bettiah, the district headquarters of West Champaran.
Jayantkant had also said that the medical examination reports of the girl, who claimed she was 18 years old, showed "no internal or external injury" which was unusual in a case of a sexual assault.
He, however, maintained that police was "not ruling out anything" as of now.
Talking to reporters in the Bihar capital, the ADG said, "The girl's medical examinations suggest that her age is between 15 and 17 years. During interrogation, the accused have confessed that they had intercourse with the girl. Even if it was with mutual consent, it becomes immaterial and falls in the category of an offence as the girl is a minor."
He also said that police was in search of another unnamed person in connection with the case.
"We would like to point out that there has been some confusion in the social media about the girl. Many people are suggesting that she was among the eight former inmates of the Muzaffarpur shelter home who were recently released and reunited with their families upon a Supreme Court direction. This is wrong," he asserted.
"The girl had gone missing from her home in May last year and found at a railway station in Muzaffarpur. She was kept at the shelter home for a week and shifted to Mokama thereafter. Two months later she was released from the Mokama care unit and handed over to her parents", the ADG clarified.
He, however, declined to divulge more details about the girl, saying "the identity of a sexual offence victim, especially a minor, has to be kept secret. Sharing more
information will give it away".
Expressing outrage over the Bettiah incident, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and the National Commission for Women (NCW) had shot off missives to top
officials in Bihar.
The NCW, which took suo motu cognizance of the incident, has asked the Director General of Police to treat the case on a priority, while the NHRC has sought a detailed
report on the case in four weeks.
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